Best Laid Plans Reviews

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Super Reviewer
September 28, 2009
I?m surprised this film didn?t do better. It?s quite a good thriller, very unpredictable with a ?you?ll either love it, or you?ll hate it? ending. I loved it!
Super Reviewer
July 25, 2007
Good thriller with a lot of twists. Well acted and thouroughly enjoyable.
Super Reviewer
November 7, 2006
Very well made film.
Super Reviewer
August 26, 2006
A decent enough thriller. The three leads put in great performances, but it never really takes off or comes to anything more than mildly entertaining. Was really just shoved in with a lot of other disstorted narrative pictures, and really that's all it has going for it.
batsmouth
Super Reviewer
March 3, 2011
a half decent attempt at a film, was a bit disinterested if i am honest a 6/10.
Super Reviewer
February 19, 2011
A poor man's The Usual Suspects done with great effect
Super Reviewer
½ April 25, 2011
Quite possibly one of the most ridiculous plots ever! Besides the young and in-her-prime Reese Witherspoon and the extraordinary Alessandro Nivola, this film is lackluster and not worth the ending.
weelee18
Super Reviewer
March 15, 2009
good movie.. lots of twist..
FanGirl
Super Reviewer
½ June 21, 2006
Kind of a slimy movie
½ April 17, 2011
expected more from the description and that it had a well-known actress in it. slow moving. watched on netflix.
March 21, 2010
Things go wrong for everybody. Need money, get it by crime. Scams and betrayals. They made three endings and the final one passed audience muster since it hinted at a ray of hope to offset the rest of the movie.
½ September 30, 2009
Trash the Crooks Story. Two friends, Nick and Bryce the main Characters. Bryce is accused of Rape and calls Nick for help; Nick arrives to find Rape Victim Tided, Gagged and Bruised; and both begin to argue. Story moves back four months where Nick is late for Father's Funeral and meets Les, a girl. Nick later meets with Father's Lawyer and is advised that there will be no Inheritance as a result of unpaid Income Taxes, then engages in a Love Affair with Les; takes odd jobs for what appears to be for money; then accepts a job to help move some drugs. Nick is later accused of stealing $40,000 by a large Black Man and given till Sunday to make reparations. Bryce shows up and takes Nick to a Mansion he is House Sitting; Nick starts asking questions about the value of the items in the house to make the Reparations Deadline. Later Nick and Bryce are having drinks at a bar, Les walks in and is introduced to Bryce as Kathy, Nick leaves the two alone, and the story moves back to the Hostage Situation. Nick then tells Bryce to kill Kathy/Les, Bryce agrees, then Nick tells Bryce he will do the job. Nick Pretends to kill Les/Kathy, and moves the so called Dead Body to his automobile. As he escapes the Mansion, the Auto is Hijacked by the Black Man looking for reparations, who finds Les/Kathy in the Trunk, and ties and gags her again. Nick arrives and discovers that all these happenings are a grand scheme to steal some Inheritance he was to obtain from his father and in the end, Les and Nick walk away a little bruised up.

Notable Sayings: "I want a Guarantee she won't speak before I let her go," "Your not to bright are you?" "Tic Tok, the mouse ran out of time, you Mother Fucker," "You Die," "Not everything in the World revolves around Fucking," "Shut the Fuck Up," and "Times up Mother Fucker."
January 26, 2009
Wasn't sure about this one, and now that I have seen it I'm still not, I've seen the story line and it's been much worse but it couldbe better.
½ December 1, 2008
This is a very good movie. Reese did a great job and I know this role was a stretch for her since it is so different from her usual roles.
January 31, 2008
Enjoyable movie. In the beginning it is quite confusing... I kept second guessing myself if that was the same girl or not. However, one you figure things at and it reaches its ending the movie is quite interesting.
June 27, 2007
All you want to do when this movie climaxes is do a Homer Simpson "D'oh!" so I guess this movie is pretty good.
½ December 25, 2012
Interesting little thriller with one unexpected twist and good performances. I enjoyed it.
½ November 15, 2012
One of the worst movies of '99.
½ May 19, 2012
underrated film with good performances and some decent twists even if some can be anticipated
½ March 4, 2012
Best Laid Plans opens with banter between two characters. The first is Bryce (Josh Brolin), who's telling a joke to Nick (Alessandro Nivola). They're at a bar, catching up after a long time apart. In walks a woman, Lissa (Reese Witherspoon). We fade to black, and a montage informs us that Lissa and Bryce ended up having sex. The next thing we see is Nick picking up the phone, with Bryce on the other end asking if Nick can come over. It's an emergency.

There isn't much urgency to Bryce once Nick shows up, which seemed weird to me. Drinks are even offered. Anyway, it becomes clear that Bryce isn't okay, as he's in a panic and he's shaking. The news is spilled: Lissa is accusing him of raping her. Through digging through her purse, it's discovered that she's a minor, despite carrying one ID that says she's 21, meaning that Bryce, a college professor, could be charged with statutory rape. He says that will mean at least ten years in prison.

There's not much he can do, Nick tells him. That's where Bryce's friend is wrong; there is something that the pair can do. See, instead of letting Lissa go to the police, Bryce put her in handcuffs and threw her in the basement. She's down there now, and when we go see her, Nick shows compassion. He wants to play the good cop, after all. After some deliberation, it's determined that Nick will threaten her in hopes that she'll decide not to tell on Bryce for breaking the law, and in exchange, she'll be released.

I don't want to spoil any more of the plot than that, but I will say one thing: After this decision, and after a key reveal, we flash backward to four months prior to this night. We learn about what led up to this point: Why certain characters act the way they do; how Bryce, someone without a lot of money, is living in this dream house; why Nick's life might be on the line, in spite of his calm demeanor; the reason behind Lissa's lawsuit threat, and so on.

It all hinges on a plot twist, which I will not reveal. About 50 minutes of Best Laid Plans is dedicated to this flashback, only allowing 40, or maybe even less, for the current story. This is a lot of build-up, and it's a bit too much for my liking. For instance, after we see footage of the previous three months, we don't need to see the meeting in the bar on this day, especially as we've already seen part of it. There isn't anything revealing here that we haven't already picked up on.

This doesn't make the film feel too long, but it does make it smell of padding, which is always a bad thing. There are a few moments throughout when there should have been tighter editing. It's a 92 minute film, although it would have been better at 90. Yes, I do believe that those two minutes make a big enough difference to note. A film like this requires your constant attention to be successful, and when you're wondering why it's showing you something, you won't be thinking about the plot.

Best Laid Plans is a thriller that keeps you engaged both during the set-up and after. You enjoy the flashback, which involves a drug deal gone bad, and you also enjoy the aftermath, which involves murder, the same drug dealers, a timer, and Abraham Lincoln. It's very satisfying for the most part, and you'll likely stay engaged for the majority of the film's running time.

Eventually, it tried too hard, I think. There always has to be one more twist, which leads to the film having too many. It tries for a lot of sleight of hand, a lot of character turns and revelations -- the final one was too silly to be believed. Sure, it makes sense in some respects, but it takes away from the film and makes a rewatch difficult. It's also done for no reason, included seemingly because the filmmakers weren't sure how to end their film.

What's shocking about this movie is how much it gets you to care about characters that are ... less than endearing, to put it nicely. Apart from Bryce, both Nick and Lissa garner sympathy throughout. Bryce is just unlikable, and with the basic premise that I've shared, you can believe that he would have raped Lissa. She's no shining star herself (passing herself off as a minor), and after other character reveals, you learn how nefarious she and Nick actually are, but because their reasons for acting this way are pure, we don't mind their deeds. These characters are three dimensional, well-acted, enjoyable to spend time with.

Best Laid Plans is a very good movie that's thrilling throughout, save for approximately two minutes when it begins to drag. That's nitpicking, to be sure, but it's those two minutes away from being a great film. As it is, it's very engaging, contains characters that you will care about even in spit of their flaws, and while the plot might try to be a little bit too clever at times, the choices made don't hinder our enjoyment. This is an enjoyable thriller that you'll likely have a good time with. I know I did.
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